Although on the whole 1967 produced fewer Old Testament books than 1966 did, readers who like geography, history, and archaeology enjoyed a great year. Picture-lovers in particular brought home treasures. The greatest let-down was in thorough commentaries, especially in view of 1966’s nine “heavy” English volumes. Form criticism flowered, for what this is worth; and hopes are bright for exegetical releases early in ’68. Here then are twenty top books for the year. Not all are conservative (those that are bear an asterisk *), but all merit mention, as do some also-rans listed with each.
1. The Land of the Bible (Westminster) by Y. Aharoni, discusses the sources presently available for a historical geography—sections on the annals of Thothmes III and the Samaritan ostraca are especially fine—and then traces the data from Canaanite to Persian times. Aharoni takes biblical evidence seriously; e.g., his single Sennacherib campaign, with Hezekiah’s accession dated 726. For particular areas, Heinz Skrobucha offers a beautifully illustrated folio on Sinai (Oxford), and Charles F. Pfeiffer presents a handy paperback, *Jerusalem through the Ages (Baker, “Studies in Biblical Archaeology,” 6). Pfeiffer has also surveyed *The Divided Kingdom (fifth in his Baker “Old Testament History” series), though Jonah and Daniel are strangely missing from his discussions of Northern Israelite and exilic prophets.
2. Pfeiffer’s cooperative work with Howard F. Vos, *The Wycliffe Historical Geography of Bible Lands (Moody), surveys Palestine and its surrounding areas from Persia to Italy, with 459 excellent illustrations (almost one per page). Each chapter has a sketch of geography and history, followed by archaeological notes on specific places. ...1
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